Some of us just finished watching the first Presidential debate, and we’re probably all still shell-shocked. The commentators are still lobbing rounds at each other, but I’ll emerge from my foxhole long enough to shoot a bulletin back from the trenches, for the benefit of those wiser souls who spent time watching Monday Night Football.
Well, it was entertaining; I’ll grant that.
This was a battle royale, and it rarely let up. They started off attacking each other, and they kept doing it through every subject. Oddly, neither of them appeared to take much damage from that; the only one who kept taking hits was poor Lester Holt, who couldn’t keep either on topic.
Plus side for Clinton: She was very polished, very well prepared, and rarely stumbled. She nicely demonstrated that she’s a highly skilled politician and has the chops to be on that stage.
Plus side for Trump: He kept being Trump. Going into this, the expectations for The Donald were far lower than for Clinton, who’s a polished debater. He wasn’t a hundred percent all the time, but he was himself.
Minus side for Clinton: Many times she had the opportunity to say something substantive but opted instead to attack her opponent personally. This works poorly for her; in the ideal scenario, he’s the jerk, not her. In my estimation, this is bad tactics.
Minus side for Trump: He spent a ton of time defending himself. Granted, this gives him a lot of sound bites and free press, but it’s all in non-positive quotes. This is frequently Trump’s method, and it has worked for him so far — but it’s something that won’t appeal to the undecideds out there. Whining is not a great way to gain respect.
My guy is Gary Johnson, and he wasn’t on stage. He was live-tweeting instead; his most memorable quote follows:
“I just left to go to the bathroom, came back, didn’t miss a thing. The #debate sounds like the same thing we’ve been listening to all year.”
The first reaction polls are coming out, and they aren’t surprising. Clinton won the debate, but we expected that. Trump’s loss, in my opinion, is something that cannot cost him since expectations were so very low.
But the bottom line as far as I’m concerned is that any Presidential debate scheduled opposite Monday Night Football is a debate that Trump can’t lose — since it’s him talking mainly to those who aren’t his supporters, whereas she’s talking to her own people. Because everyone knows Democrats don’t watch football.